3.4 Simulation Tools to assess the Impact of Wind Turbines on RADAR and other electromagnetic Signals

ettc2020 - European Test and Telemetry Conference
2020-06-23 - 2020-06-25
Virtual Conference
3. Telemetry & Ground Systems
K. von Hünerbein, W. Lange - Lange-Electronic GmbH, Gernlinden (Germany), N. Douchin - Oktal-Synthetic Environment, Vigoulet-Auzil (France)
113 - 125


In recent years the amount of wind energy power plants has risen dramatically, driven by the urgent need to increase the percentage of energy production from renewable, eco-friendly sources. Thus, more and more on-shore and off-shore wind turbine fields have been installed. While this increase is very desirable from an ecological climate perspective there are also sideeffects as noise levels, a threat to birds‘ lives and impact on the propagation of electromagnetic waves, such as RADAR signals, air traffic navigation signals, and frequencies used for data transmissions, e.g. from UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) to the ground and back. Air traffic control RADARs, for example, need to be able to detect and track all aircraft near the airport,
especially those flying at low altitude.

Detrimental effects include shadowing effects and scattering of signals, as well as increase in EM noise due to scattering, leading to degradation and even loss of the wanted signal, handicapping the data transmission between aircraft and ground stations and detection of flying objects by ground-based RADAR. In order to be able to assess the wind turbines‘ impact and degradation of the signals, sophisticated computer simulation tools have been developed [1] which perform physically correct calculations of signal propagation, including geometrical and physical optics [12], with relation to a high resolution 3D environment accurately representing both the terrain including all man-made objects such as the wind turbines and the moving land and air vehicles. In this presentation we will explain the concept and the background of one such simulation tool and present images and videos of UAV with and without interference caused by wind turbines. We will also show examples of the impact on wind turbines on Signals at 433 and 915 MHz, as used by UAVs for telemetry.